After last week’s extreme weather, 1.4 million homes in the UK were left without power and some without water. The three storms that hit the country caused chaos as homes were damaged, rail and air travel services were suspended, schools shut down, and roads and bridges closed due to heavy snow and damaging winds. The country is still recovering from the effects of storms Dudley, Eunice, and Franklin, but there are no signs that the weather will let up, with warnings issued for high winds, snow, and flooding for the coming week.
As an HVAC expert, you can help customers prepare for bad weather and storms in the future. You can share your knowledge on HVAC safety, including how to prevent damage and keep HVAC units safe. Share these suggestions with your customers, so they’re ready the next time there’s a storm.
Turn off the system before the storm starts
When severe weather warnings are issued, customers must turn off their HVAC systems. If the HVAC unit is left on during a storm, flooding and lightning could cause electrical damage. Fortunately, the damage can be minimised if the system is turned off. If your customers are concerned about keeping their home as warm as possible without heating, recommend that they close their curtains to reduce heat loss through windows and doors.
Install HVAC surge protectors
As HVAC systems are expensive, your clients will want to protect theirs at all costs. Surge protectors can stop the damage from power surges caused by lightning. A surge protector provides a barrier between the HVAC unit and power surges. If lightning strikes the home or somewhere nearby, the device can stop a power surge from causing irreparable damage. They’re also a relatively inexpensive way to protect your HVAC system during a storm.
Cover and protect your outdoor units
Customers with outdoors HVAC units should protect them before a storm. They can cover their outdoor units with a plywood sheet to minimise damage from debris or rubble. If they have a garden, it would be wise to store or secure gardening equipment or outdoor furniture to stop the wind from blowing them away, potentially damaging the HVAC unit or other parts of the home. While outdoor HVAC units are designed to withstand rain, flooding can cause damage that only you’ll be able to fix. A cover over the outdoor unit won’t be enough to protect it from floodwaters, so advise them to elevate HVAC units if they live in a flood-prone area.
Invest in a generator
After the recent storms, many homes were left without power for several days, without knowledge of when the power would be restored. Encourage your customers to invest in generators so they can keep their homes warm and advise them to elevate the machine if flood warnings have been issued. If the generator gets wet, it may get damaged or cause electrocution. If a customer decides to use a generator and they’re not sure whether the HVAC system has been damaged, urge them to reach out to you for assistance.
Schedule inspections after the storm with HVAC Software
After a storm, you’ll need to inspect your customers’ HVAC systems to ensure they’re safe to use. If you’re expecting several customers to contact you for inspections, schedule as many appointments in advance as possible with HVAC Software. The software streamlines the job management process, as you can create and assign digital job cards to your technicians ahead of time. If a client has an emergency, you can create a new job and send the nearest available mobile worker to the job site.